Saturday, 4 April 2015

Modified Weekend

The weather just isn't cooperating for our camp out mock show weekend, so we cancelled the camping part. The camping will still happen,  we're just going to reschedule for another weekend. For this weekend, we're salvaging our plans somewhat by trailering in to the exhibition grounds each day and riding regardless of the weather.

Big ring is big,! About 200x400 ft. People were taking lessons in the part marked out for dressage so Bridget was spared and got to do the little x rail in front instead :)

Day 1 went well - Bridget trailered like a champ so that's always a win with a new trailer and horse buddy to share with. On arrival, the place was pretty busy, but there were only three of us in our group: myself, trainer S who I shared the ride with and normally take lessons with, and my best friend (another S), whom I've ridden with since we were kids. Best friend brought both her show horses, while trainer S and I just brought one each. Since this weekend is intended to be a show prep one, we warmed up as per usual, then ran through W/T/C/reverse as a group to imitate a flat class. I know many of you probably do this every week in lessons, but I ride mainly alone and the other two are also on young horses so it's good practice for the baby horses, particularly when they're not used to cantering in a group. Next up, we just worked on the things we'd like to improve and tried to help each other out. For me, that was obviously canter and I'm pleased to say Bridget did alright - not as good as she's been recently since I think the big ring intimidates and backs her off a bit, but we got both leads for a few large circles without much fuss and I was happy. We popped over a little gymnastic a few times and she was fabulous there too, so we spent a lot of time hacking around on the buckle watching everyone else work. Both the S's are light years beyond me in terms of riding and training so I always pick up handy tips. Bridget was mostly patient to watch the others - I just put her to work bending, trotting, transitions within the trot,, shoulder/haunches in, etc whenever she got a little distracted. Being a lazy  pony she caught on to that program quickly and was actually really well behaved and steady. She received many compliments from other riders, mostly because she's cute and quiet rather than any awesome things she did lol.
Haven't ridden a horse yet who doesn't think the announcer's booth is the scariest thing ever, particularly as we store spare barrels and poles beside it.

Tomorrow we're going to set up a bit more of a cross rail course for me (what a treat to have the room for an entire course!) along with a proper trail pattern course for best friend who rides western. I'm actually looking forward to the trail course as well - it will be interesting to see how the bridge goes - we've mostly got it mastered on the trail but she can still be uncertain. The pattern part I'm pretty sure I'll stink at, but it's good practice.

We discussed show plans a bit today and I've got some tentative things mapped out, depending on how our canter progresses. I have a standing invite and they're encouraging me to come along no matter what, even to enter walk trot classes for the outing, but I'm torn on that - so much $$ and travel for very limited classes or tests offered. I'd rather wait and have a better canter and be able to enter more classes. Unfortunately neither of my show buddies are interested in eventing so I'm looking at open shows or dressage/hunter/jumper stuff. First one is mid May which is maybe too tight of a deadline!


9 comments:

  1. What a good idea to practice like that! I think you should go for it and do the mid-May show...that's lots of time :)

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    1. She's really coming along well at the moment, but I still remember the weeks of frustration and don't want to get overambitious lol. I'm not ruling it out at all though. There is a whole series of shows so we will definitely get to a few!

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  2. Good job! I'm excited to hear about the show and if you plan on going to it!

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    1. Fingers crossed, there were a number of people interested in going, so we'll have a fun crew to accompany us this summer!

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  3. Quiet and cute pony totally deserves lots of compliments :) Excited to see what you guys decide to do!

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    1. Thanks :) I really, really want to event her since our open shows are more AQHA style and we won't fit in. Still, the open stuff should be fun and affordable for a first season experience, and they do offer dressage % days and hunter/jumper classes alongside some of the open shows that I hope to make it to

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  4. that actually sounds like so much fun - even if the camping bit got postponed. riding in a big ring with a group of horses is definitely not something to be taken for granted with a horse unaccustomed to it, but the idea of going through the motions together as a group sounds like a good one. good luck figuring out your show plans !

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    1. We had people coming and going the whole time too, which was excellent for baby pony brains! I think it was a great idea to do a mock show run through weekend...I think we all feel a lot more confident about how our horses will handle the real thing.

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  5. Exciting times ahead, looking forward to following your progress and off site adventures ☺

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